On interface properties of ultra-thin and very-thin oxide/a-Si:H structures prepared by oxygen based plasmas and chemical oxidation

Pincik, E. and Kobayashi, H. and Hajossy, R. and Gleskova, H. and Takahashi, M. and Jergel, M. and Brunner, R. and Ortega, L. and Kucera, M. and Kral, M. and Rusnak, J. (2007) On interface properties of ultra-thin and very-thin oxide/a-Si:H structures prepared by oxygen based plasmas and chemical oxidation. Applied Surface Science, 253 (16). pp. 6697-6715. ISSN 0169-4332

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Abstract

Amorphous hydrogenated silicon (a-Si:H) belongs still to most promising types of semiconductors for its utilization in fabrication of TFTs and thin-film solar cell technology due to corresponding cheap a-Si:H-based device production in comparison with, e.g. crystalline silicon (c-Si) technologies. The contribution deals with both two important modes of preparation of very-thin and ultra-thin silicon dioxide films in the surface region of a-Si:H semiconductor (oxygen plasma sources and liquid chemical methods) and electrical, optical and structural properties of produced oxide/semiconductor structures, respectively. Dominant aim is focused on investigation of oxide/semiconductor interface properties and their comparison and evaluation from view of utilization of used technological modes in the nanotechnological industry. Following three basic types of oxygen plasma sources were used for the first time in our laboratories for treatments of surfaces of a-Si:H substrates: (i) inductively coupled plasma in connection with its applying at plasma anodic oxidation; (ii) rf plasma as the source of positive oxygen ions for plasma immersion ion implantation process; (iii) dielectric barrier discharge ignited at high pressures. The liquid chemical manner of formation SiO2/a-Si:H structures uses 68 wt% nitric acid aqueous solutions (i.e., azeotropic mixture with water). Their application in crystalline Si technologies has been presented with excellent results in the formation of ultra-thin SiO2/c-Si structures [H. Kobayashi, M. Asuha, H.I. Takahashi, J. Appl. Phys. 94 (2003) 7328]. Passivation of surface and interface states by liquid cyanide treatment is additional original technique applied after (or before) formation of almost all formed thin film/a-Si:H structures. Passivation process should be used if high-quality electronical parameters of devices can be reached.